The International Journal of Restorative Justice

Article

The challenges for good practice in police-facilitated restorative justice for female offenders

Keywords Restorative justice, police, female offenders
Authors Birgit Larsson, Gillian Schofield en Laura Biggart
Author's information

321432 Birgit Larsson
Birgit Larsson is a lecturer at the School of Social Work, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK. Contact author: b.larsson@uea.ac.uk.

321435 Gillian Schofield
Gillian Schofield is a Professor at the School of Social Work, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.

321438 Laura Biggart
Laura Biggart is lecturer at the School of Psychology, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.
  • Abstract

      This article reports on the uses of police-led restorative justice (RJ) for female offenders by one constabulary in England from 2007 to 2012. The study consisted of (1) quantitative analysis of administrative police data on 17,486 participants, including 2,586 female offenders, and (2) qualitative analysis of twelve narrative interviews with female offenders sampled from the database. Quantitative data demonstrated that the majority of female offenders committed low-level offences and that the majority of participants experienced street RJ. Female offenders reported mixed experiences with RJ in qualitative interviews. On the whole, women did not understand what RJ was, leading to complications as many felt their victims were mutually culpable. Some felt that the police forced them to apologise and treated them like criminals while others felt the police gave them a second chance. The study raises questions about what the police can bring to RJ in relation to vulnerable women.

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